David Alexander Edwards (born 3 February 1986) is a professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Championship club Wolverhampton Wanderers. He also plays for the Wales national team. He is known for his energetic runs and work rate.
Edwards began his career at hometown club Shrewsbury Town before a short stay at Luton Town, brought him to the attention of Wolverhampton Wanderers, for whom he signed in January 2008. With Wolves he has played in three different divisions – English Football League (Championship), League One and the Premier League.
A full international since 2007, Edwards has earned over 30 caps for Wales and represented the nation at UEFA Euro 2016.
Dave had previously played for the Wales U17 and U19 teams making his U21 debut against Cyprus on 16 May 2006. He had been selected for the under-21 squad for the friendly against Northern Ireland on 28 February 2006, but missed the match through injury. He made his full international debut on 17 November 2007.
His first experiences with the senior team were under John Toshack in 2007, remaining an unused substitute against Slovakia and withdrawing from games against San Marino and Cyprus with a hamstring injury. He made his full international debut on 17 November 2007 against the Republic of Ireland at the Millennium Stadium as a 37th-minute substitute for Carl Robinson in a 2–2 Euro 2008 qualifier.
On 10 October 2008, Edwards scored the opening goal in a 2010 World Cup qualifier against Liechtenstein, and against Azerbaijan on 6 June 2009. He ended the campaign with two goals. Following Wales' disappointing qualifying campaign, he was called up again for 14 November 2009 friendly against Scotland, a 3–0 win, and opened the scoring with a volley from Aaron Ramsey's assist in the 16th minute.
Dave was part of the transitional Wales squad under the late Gary Speed. Dave has spoken fondly about 'Speedo' and how his influence as a footballer, friend & mentor has help him become a better person & professional footballer - something he will never forget.
More recently, Dave was including the Euro 2016 Wales squad to compete in France. Dave started the first game against Slovakia before being taken off for Joe Ledley in the 69th minute, Wales went on to win the game 2-1, with Gareth Bale & Robson-Kanu getting the goals. The next game against England, Dave came off the bench in the 67th minute, this time replacing Ledley but unfortunately wasn't able to change the game resulting in a 2-1 loss to England. Wales played Russia next with a convincing 3-0 win, once more Dave was used as a substitute in the 74th minute replacing Joe Allen.
This turned out to the Dave's last game of the tournament being name as an unused substitute for the remaining games against Northern Ireland, Belgium & Portugal.
With Dave being the professional he is, he was just happy to be part of the squad and offer help and support where and when needed.
Dave Edwards joined Wolves for £675,000 from Luton Town in January, 2008, and was immediately making a very quick and positive impression.
His debut, two days after signing, was away at Scunthorpe United, the club against whom he had made his first ever senior appearance for Shrewsbury Town as a 17-year-old.
And, eight minutes into his first Wolves start, at Glanford Park, Edwards found the net with a low shot after a pass from Andy Keogh.
That was to be the only goal of his first half season at Molineux, but Edwards was to make a sustained impact in his first full campaign as a Wolves player in 2008/09.
In total he made 48 appearances as Wolves enjoyed a superb season to clinch promotion to the Premier League, Edwards starts’ including the final six games of the campaign during which both promotion – and the league title - were secured.
He made 61 Premier League appearances during that period, going up against some of the best midfielders in world football, and playing a part in team performances which overcame Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham.
Indeed one of Edwards’ career highlights came against Manchester City, scoring the winning goal past former Shrewsbury house-mate and team-mate Joe Hart as Wolves overcame the title-chasers at Molineux.
Wolves’ double relegation from Premier League to League One was a difficult time for all, and Edwards was among those players who took some criticism from supporters.
His influence shone through both on and off the pitch, scoring nine goals in a record-breaking Wolves season including a run of six in nine games towards the end, and providing a calming and crucial voice of experience to a young team behind the scenes.
Edwards’ goal in a 2-0 win at Crewe in April, 2014, proved the catalyst for memorable scenes as Wolves fans invaded the pitch in readiness to celebrate promotion, which was clinched with that victory at Gresty Road.
Edwards’ new found acclaim with supporters saw him handed the nickname of ‘Dangerous Dave’ and, as other clubs circled in the summer of 2014, he was only too pleased to commit his future to Wolves by signing a new contract.
Back in the Championship Edwards’ Wolves’ resurgence continued, scoring eight goals in the season including some more memorable additions to his overall tally.
These included a searing header on the opening weekend against Norwich, the late deadlock-breaker on the day Wolves marked the passing of Sir Jack Hayward against Blackpool, and then another stunning late header to see off Leeds 4-3 in what was the game of the season at Molineux.
Wolves were to agonisingly miss out on the play-offs by goal difference, and while the 2015/16 campaign wasn’t the most successful, it finished on a high for Edwards.
Having suffered a broken metatarsal against QPR at Loftus Road in January, Edwards faced a battle to be fit to stand a chance of being named in what would be an historic Wales squad for the European Championships.
His commitment to his rehabilitation saw him return ahead of schedule, not to mention finding the net in a game at Hull, and he got enough action under his belt to be selected for that Welsh squad which headed out to France, where he made three appearances.
Returning to Wolves to head into the 2016/17 season in a new and exciting era, Edwards’ stood on 255 appearances for the club, from which he had notched 34 goals.
That appearance figure saw him closing in on the top 40 appearance makers in the club’s history, as he prepared for his tenth season of involvement at Wolves as the longest-serving outfield player in the dressing room.
And the midfielder’s professionalism off the pitch continues to see him regarded as a role model for many in and around Wolverhampton, landing the Wolves Community Trust Player of the Year award for his services to the club’s activities in the local community.
Selected by Walter Zenga for his first game at the helm, Edwards was hoping to stake his claim for regular inclusion in another new Wolves dawn, displaying the levels of commitment and dedication which inspires the respect of team-mates, coaches and supporters alike.
Write up by Paul Berry
Dave Edwards is fondly remembered by Luton Town fans, even though he had to leave the club to join Wolves as we entered the darkest period in the club’s history. In fact, his departure was all part of raising vital and significant funds to help save the club.
Dave joined for the 2007/2008 season and quickly became a favourite with his all action, end-to-end displays, full of running, determination and sheer ability.
My abiding memory is of an outrageous Boxing Day match at Bristol Rovers when Luton had no fewer than three players sent off! Somehow the eight men managed to weather the storm and, inspired by our never-say-die wonderboy, finished up with a one all draw. Dave scored the goal.
He then starred in an FA Cup tie at home to Liverpool, which we drew, and that was it. We were forced to let him go, as Luton Town entered administration for the third time in ten years. A new consortium took over, of which I was the chairman, we were docked a total of 40 points in six months and we ultimately dropped into the Conference.
We are back in the league now, full of ambition, and I know many Luton fans always look to see how Wolves and Dave Edwards are getting on. Grateful for his wholehearted performances in a Luton shirt, but sad that his spell at Kenilworth Road was all too brief.
Write up by Nick Owen - Luton Town Chairman
Having watched Shrewsbury Town from the Riverside at the club's old Gay Meadow home, Dave Edwards lived the dream of many young Salopians by graduating from the terraces to the first team.
Dave progressed from the apprentice ranks with his home town club to make a real impact - and there was no stopping him once he made the breakthrough.
His first team debut came on May 3, 2003 when, aged 17, he was summoned from the bench to face Scunthorpe, the last match of a hugely disappointing season which saw Shrewsbury relegated from the Football League.
The following season, along with close friend and future England goalkeeper Joe Hart, Dave was part of the Town squad which bounced straight back up from the Conference at the first attempt.
His incredible energy levels and keen eye for goal - his first senior strike came in a 4-0 Meadow demolition of Darlington just after Christmas 2004 - soon led to speculation linking him with other clubs. That really started to grow as the 2006-07 campaign unfolded - his and the club's last at Gay Meadow.
Come the end of the season, it was time for a new challenge, with Dave, by then a regular in the Wales under-21 side, departing for Luton after netting 15 goals in 137 league and cup appearances for Shrewsbury.
Write up by Stuart Dunn